Ancient Paths Title

Stand at the crossroads and look, ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it.  —Jeremiah 6:16

Joel 1

Messenger: Joel
Focus: The People of Judah
Time Period: 606–586 BC

Joel 1
The Prophet Joel weeping for the people



The people of Judah were prosperous and complacent. Taking God for granted, they have turned to self-centeredness, idolatry, and sin. Joel warned that this kind of lifestyle would inevitably lead to God's judgments. A locust plague destroyed their crops resulting in an economic collapse.


The Prophet Joel presented a solution to restore the people of Judah to right relationship with God. He called them to a solemn assembly of fasting, prayer, and worship. This would lead to the Lord's returned blessing on their land and economy.


Judah did not discern God's discipline revealed in the economic shaking. They did not heed the prophet's warning and they missed their opportunity to receive mercy. Therefore, a greater judgment came in the form of a military invasion by the Babylonian army.

“Gird yourselves and lament, you priests. Wail, you who minister before the altar. Come, lie all night in sackcloth, you who minister to my God. Consecrate a fast, call a sacred assembly.... Gather the elders and all the inhabitants of the land into the house of the LORD your God, and cry out to the LORD. Alas for the day! For the day of the LORD is at hand; it shall come as destruction from the Almighty.” —Joel 1:13–15